Last but not least, this 20 minute mindfulness based body scan is sure to settle your body and mind and be that deep refresh you need. (link in bio)
You’ll be guided step by step through drawing the attention inward and to truly feel, without judgement, what you are experiencing in the present moment. As you move through the session, keep the “name it to tame it” mindset and do your best to notice, without allowing the mind to spin off into emotional responses, what’s happening in the body. Responding to our emotions is a natural and healthy process but unchecked, can lead to a general feeling of unhappiness, anger or despair. Mindfulness based practices have been shown to reduce stress and chronic pain, improve sleep as well as overall mental health.
Wellness Challenge Day 9: Ujjayi Breath
The Victorious (Ujjayi) Breath is a traditional yoga pranayama practice that is easy to learn and fun to practice. Modern research is finding what yoga has known all along – that breath practices are powerful tools for managing stress and increasing happiness.
Once learned, the Victorious Breath can be practiced nearly anywhere. In yoga posture practice, the Victorious Breath can be used to increase our heat, focus, and energy. Outside of practice, people find it brings them into the present moment, soothes the nervous system, and brings them back into balance.
Learn this simple technique and you’ll be able to take it with you wherever you go.
Every day we are faced with the heaviness of our own suffering and the suffering of others. The amount of suffering all around us can quickly become overwhelming. Compassion helps ease this suffering. Most of us value compassion, patience, and love, but it isn’t always our instinct to turn to these values.
Through metta bhavana or loving kindness meditation we work towards making compassion our default response to suffering. This compassion and loving kindness is for all beings; ourselves, our loved ones, strangers, and all sentient beings in the world. In loving kindness meditation we repeat simple phrases that are like gifts or blessings intentionally given to ourselves and others.
In this guided meditation we will repeat four simple phrases.
May I (you) be happy.
May I (you) be safe.
May I (you) be healthy.
May I (you) live with ease.
Gratitude can make our lives better. This is supported by experience, tradition, and research. Gratitude is the appreciation of what we have and leads into other enriching emotions, such as abundance, generosity, and compassion. How do we feel more gratitude? Practice. Try this short guided meditation to bring to mind something you are grateful for and relish the felt experience of that gratitude in your body. Keep a gratitude journal in which you write down at least three things you are grateful for each day. You will find yourself looking forward to this time of celebrating what you have in your life, as well as finding that gratitude comes more and more easily, arising even without trying as you move through your days.
Developing emotional and mental equanimity is an important way to be able to face the many ups and downs of life. Our minds are constantly categorizing emotions and experiences into positive, negative, or neutral. We are conditioned to try to fight against bad feelings and experiences and to seek out only the good. No matter how hard we try, everyone experiences waves of highs and lows. Being bombarded by bad news all day, every day can leave us rocked to our emotional core.
Cultivating equanimity is a way for us to not ignore or be indifferent to the negative parts of life, but to manage our reactions so that we can approach the fluctuations with a calm and open mind.
Awareness is the basis for all practices. When you watch your breath, it happens within your awareness. When you practice gratitude, it happens within your awareness. Awareness practice is a simple shift, from being aware of some thing to being aware of being aware. Try it now. Become aware of the feeling of awakeness and the space in which you notice experiences. It is vast and calm. Use Awareness practice as a daily practice to build calm and clarity, and use it when you feel stressed and overwhelmed. Instead of being stressed be aware of stress by changing your focus. It is a small but profound shift leading toward happiness and insight.